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Eagles’ Griswold punches ticket to Rio

(July 6, 2016) – Carson-Newman men’s swimmer Robert Griswold will be headed to Rio de Janeiro in September to compete in the 2016 Paralympic Games.

Griswold, who has cerebral palsy, will be one of 10 men on the U.S. Paralympic Swimming Team.

He won the 100 Meter Backstroke with a time of 1:04.69 to qualify for the games. That time is a U.S. record for his class and a second off Konstantine Lisinkov’s (Russia) world record.

“Robert is incredibly deserving of this trip to represent the United States in Rio,” said Jordan Taylor, Carson-Newman’s interim swim coach. “This is the payoff for his hard work and commitment over a number of years, and especially this last year at Carson-Newman. He’s been a tremendous addition to this team and we’ll be watching from back here in Mossy Creek when he competes this summer.”

Griswold’s time is also the second fastest qualifying time this year; he is a tenth of a second off the fastest time among swimmer’s who are designated S8 – or swimmers who have lost either both hands or one arm as well as athletes with severe restrictions in the joints of the lower limbs.

China’s Cong Zhou has a time of 1:04.55 to edge out Griswold as the world’s top qualifier.

Griswold will be Carson-Newman’s second known Olympian/Paralympian. He joins wrestler Lazaro Reinoso, who won a bronze medal at the 1992 games.

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